Participation in a Framework for the Provision of Software Asset Management Services :Specifications of Requirements

By June 20, 2015

3.1 Introduction
3.1.1 As indicated in Part 1, the Department of Finance is seeking to put in place a framework consisting of three lots, each containing a number of Service Providers to assist non-commercial Pubic Service Bodies manage their software license estate through the provision of Software Asset Management services.

3.1.2 Software Asset Management Services (SAM) are the services that involve managing and optimising the purchase, deployment, and support and maintenance of software applications and licences within an organisation. Software Asset Management services should also ensure compliancy in accordance with any third party license agreements.

3.1.2 Computer Software is protected under the Copyright and Related Act, 2000. This Act makes the unauthorised use of software by businesses a criminal offence and provides for the making of substantial awards of damages and/or imprisonment in the event of a conviction. Circular 3/2001 was issued by the Department of Finance subsequent to the Copyright and Related Act, 2000 coming into operation. The Circular directed that all Departments and bodies under their aegis “…should have in place an effective software compliance programme in order to ensure that only lawfully acquired software is in use.” In addition to ensuring proper license acquisition processes, the SAM services should ensure that compliancy is achieved with respect to appropriate usage metrics e.g. user, processor etc.

3.1.3 The requirement of this Request for Tender is to further assist public bodies to comply with the law while ensuring that value for money is being delivered through continued optimisation of their software licensing estate. Senior IT managers need to satisfy themselves that their existing software management procedures follow current best practice in ensuring, that:
• Only lawfully acquired software is in use;
• Investment in software is optimised;
• Only costs necessary and appropriate for licensing and support are incurred;
• Public bodies are properly prepared for audits.



3.1.4 The combination of increasing numbers of software vendors, brands, products, versions and components; new licensing models (e.g. per user, per seat, per processor, per server, subscription); innovations in hardware technology (virtualisation, multi-core processors); online availability of downloadable software; and an ever-changing business environment have resulted in increasingly complex licensing and support and maintenance arrangements. Therefore, establishing a SAM process is critical to the success of ongoing software license management. A well-defined pro-active SAM process will enable an organisation to manage their software licensing environment and the support and maintenance arrangements on an ongoing basis. It should be a flexible process allowing for staff changes, new projects, changing requirements and a changing technology infrastructure. One of the benefits of this process is that it establishes software as a quantifiable asset. An effective SAM process should address questions such as:
• How many software products are deployed?
• How many software products deployed are licensed/not licensed?
• How many devices are running each software product?
• Where are specific applications deployed?
• Can deployed software be reconciled with currently held licences?
• Does everyone need the full software suite or only certain components?
• Is the appropriate licensing type being used?
• What type of licensing model would serve the entire organisation’s needs most economically?
• Are the most appropriate and cost effective support and maintenance arrangements in place?

3.1.5 Should successful tenderers require the deployment of a server in order to provide their service to Public Service Bodies the Department of Finance will make available hosting space in a Government controlled hosting centre. This centre will be serviced by a UPS and generator backed power system as well as resilient, high speed (100 Mb or greater) connections to Government Networks. This approach will ensure value for money provision by the deployment of a single instance accessible by all Public Service Bodies participating in the framework as set out in section 1.6.

Any service deployed in this manner will be available to Government agencies via one of the private VLANs available to each Public Service Body. This method ensures that any information sent from Public Service Bodies to the deployed system will not be transmitted over the public Internet at any time.

To facilitate the multiple tenderers that may be successful from this competition a secure LAN for each tenderer will be created that requires it. Access to this LAN will be policed by a firewall. The Department of Finance or their nominated representatives will manage this firewall. It is proposed that successful tenderers will connect to their own systems via a secure VPN tunnel delivered to the firewall via the public Internet. Department of Finance staff will liaise with any tenderer wishing to make use of this facility to establish any specific security or connectivity requirements.

There will be no charge to tenderers wishing to make use of this facility for hosting space, bandwidth or power. The cost of the firewall will be shared among successful tenderers on a pro rata basis. This service will be available to successful tenderers from all lots listed in section 3.3.1.

Government Networks is a private network operated by the Department of Finance and is designed primarily to facilitate easy, efficient, secure and reliable communication between Public Service Bodies and to support existing and future Government applications. A mechanism for providing Public Service Bodies with secure access to the Internet is included as well as infrastructure enabling access to applications hosted by Public Service Bodies.

3.2 Independent SAM Services
3.2.1 The Department of Finance seeks proposals for the provision of independent Software Asset Management services to Public Service Bodies. Tenderers must be independent of all software vendors for which they are proposing to supply Software Asset Management services.

3.2.2 Tenderers must declare all relationships that are currently in place between the tenderer and any software vendor e.g. partner, value added reseller.

3.2.3 Successful tenderers must notify the contract manager of any further relationships put in place between the tenderer and any software vendor during the lifetime of the Framework.

3.2.4 As part of the Vendor Participation Agreement successful tenderers will be expected to sign a declaration that they will fully serve the interests of Public Service Bodies in any Software Assent Management services regardless of existing relationships they may have in place with software vendors.

3.2.5 Successful tenderers that are found to be in breach of the requirement to provide independent SAM support services or are found not to be fully serving the interests of Public Service Bodies will be removed from the Framework.

3.3 Lots
3.3.1 In order to provide Public Service Bodies with the necessary services required for full license estate compliance whilst also facilitating the flexibility required for local requirements, this framework tender exercise is divided into three distinct lots as follows:
1) Software license estate management;
2) Microsoft license management;
3) Oracle license management.

3.3.2 Tenderers may apply for one, two or all three lots as they deem appropriate. While tenderers may submit a tender to one, two or all three lots, all documentation must be completed and submitted separately for each lot. Each lot will be awarded separately and it is the Department’s intention to admit a maximum of five suitably qualified tenderers per lot into the framework agreement.

3.4 Lot 1 – Software License Estate Management
3.4.1 It is envisaged that generic software license exercises will be required to assist public bodies put in place a SAM process to ensure that they are software license compliant across their whole organisation license estate and continue to remain compliant as events occur that may impact compliance. Also, in order to ensure on-going compliance there may be a requirement for organisations to carry out smaller specific licensing tasks across their license estate, for example, annual audits, update of asset register or housekeeping tasks.

3.4.2 In response to this Request for Tender, tenderers must give full details of their services provided, approach to service provision and costing model for the following two scenarios under Lot 1 Software License Estate Management.

3.4.3 Analysis of current licence estate
Successful tenderers will be required to conduct a review of an organisation’s existing software licence estate with the aim of implementing a SAM process. Successful tenderers will be asked to identify current software deployment, usage of software, current licenses and support and maintenance arrangements in place. The resulting documentation should contain a software asset management plan which will incorporate the appropriate inventories. Along with putting in place a SAM process this exercise should also present recommendations on optimisation of the current license estate. The current license estate analysis exercise should include, but not limited to, the following tasks:
• Identification of software installations (vendor, products, modules, versioning etc);
• Analysis and confirmation of existing vendor license grants;
• IT architecture analysis from a licensing perspective;
• Provide advice on overall licensing requirements;
• Highlight areas of over/under licensing;
• Analyse current metrics and identify opportunities to review metrics (user/usage/hardware based/enterprise etc);
• Identify licence types being maintained unnecessarily;
• Propose opportunities for more cost effective third-party support provision where appropriate;
• Outline legacy systems which no longer need licensing;
• Prepare a Software Asset Management plan (incl. inventories);
• Manage events that impact license compliance.

3.4.4 Regular house keeping
Periodically organisations may seek the provision of software asset management services as part of their regular housekeeping tasks to ensure ongoing and continued compliance. As circumstances of the organisation change (e.g. staff numbers change, usage requirements change, and contract renewals fall due) regular reviews/health checks of the organisation’s current license estate should be completed and signed off as compliant. The services that tenderers will be requested to provide include, but are not limited to, the following:
• Update of software inventory (vendor, products, modules, versioning etc);
• Update of license inventory (existing vendor license grants);
• Review IT architecture from a licensing perspective;
• Highlight areas of over/under licensing;
• Identify inappropriate metrics (user/usage/hardware based/enterprise etc);
• Identify licence types being maintained incorrectly/unnecessarily;
• Review of support and maintenance arrangements in place with a view to further optimisation;
• Propose opportunities for more cost effective third-party support provision where appropriate;
• Outline systems which no longer need licensing.

This compliance/health check exercise can be considered as a follow on from and an update to the ‘Analysis of current licence estate’ exercise set out in section 3.3.3 above. The result of this exercise should be reflected in the relevant body’s Software Asset Management plan and the appropriate inventories to ensure they are kept up to date. The exercise should also include recommendations on further optimisation of the current license estate.

3.5 Lot 2 – Microsoft License Management
3.5.1 Successful tenderers for lot 2 will be required to assist public bodies in a number of software license management exercises across the Microsoft product set. Successful tenderers may be asked to conduct tasks specific to the deployment of particular Microsoft products or across the full Microsoft product set deployed in the organisation. It is essential that tenderers have the necessary skill sets and experience in Microsoft licensing arrangements and this should be detailed in their response to lot 2. Tenderers should also demonstrate how their approaches will compliment the SAM process to ensure that the organisation is software license compliant across their Microsoft license estate and that this is fully documented in the appropriate inventories. In order to ensure on-going compliance there may also be a requirement for specific Microsoft licensing tasks, for example, annual audits, update of asset register, new system implementations or housekeeping tasks.

3.5.2 Tenderers must demonstrate, through worked examples where possible, their understanding of the different support options for Microsoft products taking into account initial capital acquisition costs and whole of lifetime costs. Tenderers must be able to show their understanding of the different support options for Microsoft products by demonstrating innovative approaches to licensing models and support and maintenance arrangements that will provide optimum value for money.

3.5.3 In response to this Request for Tender tenderers must give full details of their Microsoft license skill sets, services provided, approaches and costing model for the following two scenarios under Lot 2 Microsoft License Management Tasks.

3.5.4 License optimisation for Microsoft products
Tenderers will be requested by public bodies to engage in an exercise to optimise their licence estate for the Microsoft product set. Tenderers will be required to make recommendations for the optimal licence model for the Microsoft products or systems in use, to ensure value for money is achieved. Tenderers should also determine and make recommendations on ways to minimise the cost of support and maintenance for the licence estate where such options exist, for example, the use of third-party support where appropriate. This optimisation exercise should include, but not be limited to, the following services:
• Identification of software installations (products, modules, versioning etc);
• Analysis and confirmation of existing vendor license grants;
• IT architecture analysis from a licensing perspective;
• Advice on achieving optimum licensing models;
• Review of support and maintenance arrangements in place with a view to further optimisation;
• Optimisation and streamlining current support and maintenance arrangements;
• Identify the most cost effective allocation of current licenses;
• Identify opportunities for IT architecture consolidation that would lead to reduced licensing and support and maintenance costs;
• Interpretation of licensing agreements/contracts;
• Propose a software licensing strategy to achieve compliance and optimisation on an ongoing basis;
• Recommend software license re-use, migration, upgrade, transfer and termination as appropriate.

3.5.5 Advice on license purchase
Following a successful procurement exercise an organisation may seek advice on the appropriate license matrix to enter into for their respective system/organisational requirements. Also during contract negotiation for purchasing new software licenses, assistance may be sought in order to guarantee that the most advantageous terms and conditions are obtained. When bodies are considering system changes, upgrade and enhancement advice may be sought to ensure that licensing costs are optimized.

In advance of contract agreement public bodies may request tenderers to provide guidance and assistance on the most advantageous Microsoft licensing model to implement. The guidance should include whole of life costs, support and maintenance agreements, license usage and deployment options, ensuring optimum licensing arrangements and value for money is achieved.

3.6 Lot 3 – Oracle License Management
3.6.1 Successful tenderers for lot 3 will be required to assist public bodies in a number of software license management exercises across the Oracle product set. Successful tenderers may be asked to conduct tasks specific to the deployment of particular Oracle products or for the full product set across the entire organisation. It is essential that tenderers have the necessary skill sets and experience in Oracle licensing arrangements and this should be detailed in their response to lot 3. Tenderers should also demonstrate how their approaches will compliment the SAM process to ensure that the organisation is software license compliant across their Oracle license estate and that this is fully documented in the appropriate inventories. In order to ensure on-going compliance there may also be a requirement for specific Oracle licensing tasks, for example, annual audits, update of asset register, new system implementations or housekeeping tasks.

3.6.2 Tenderers must demonstrate, through worked examples where possible, their understanding of the different support options for Oracle products taking into account initial capital acquisition costs and whole of lifetime costs. Tenderers should be able to show their understanding of the different support options for Oracle products by demonstrating innovative approaches to licensing models and support and maintenance arrangements that will provide optimum value for money.

3.6.3 In response to this Request for Tender tenderers must give full details of their Oracle license skill sets, services provided, approaches and costing model for the following two scenarios under Lot 3 Oracle License Management Tasks.

3.6.4 License optimisation for Oracle products
Tenderers will be requested by public bodies to engage in an exercise to optimise their licence estate for the Oracle product set. Tenderers will be required to make recommendations for the optimal licence model for the Oracle products or systems in use, to ensure value for money is achieved. Tenderers should also determine and make recommendations on ways to minimise the cost of support and maintenance for the licence estate where such options exist, for example, the use of third-party support where appropriate. This optimisation exercise should include, but not be limited to, the following services:
• Identification of software installations (products, modules, versioning etc);
• Analysis and confirmation of existing vendor license grants;
• IT architecture analysis from a licensing perspective;
• Review of support and maintenance arrangements in place with a view to further optimisation;
• Advice on appropriate support and maintenance arrangements;
• Optimisation and streamlining current support and maintenance arrangements;
• Identify the most cost effective allocation of current licenses;
• Identify opportunities for IT architecture consolidation that would lead to reduced licensing and support and maintenance costs;
• Interpretation of licensing agreements/contracts;
• Propose a software licensing strategy to achieve compliance and optimisation on an ongoing basis;
• Recommend software license re-use, migration, upgrade, transfer and termination as appropriate.

3.6.5 Advice on license purchase
Following a successful procurement exercise an organisation may seek advice on the appropriate license matrix to enter into for their respective system/organisational requirements. Also during contract negotiation for purchasing new software licenses, assistance may be sought in order to guarantee that the most advantageous terms and conditions are obtained. When bodies are considering system changes, upgrade and enhancement advice may be sought to ensure that licensing costs are optimized.

In advance of contract agreement public bodies may request tenderers to provide guidance and assistance on the most advantageous Oracle licensing model to implement. The guidance should include whole of life costs, support and maintenance agreements, license usage and deployment options, ensuring optimum licensing arrangements and value for money is achieved.

3.7 Costing Model
3.7.1 As part of the costing model tenderers are requested to outline the typical tasks to be carried out in each scenario, their employee resources assigned to each task and the per diem of each employee resource.

3.7.2 The costing model for each scenario should also outline in detail all other costs associated with the tenderers proposed solution.

3.7.3 The Department of Finance is interested in innovative approaches to costing which, when appropriate, link compensation with savings made. It must be noted that savings made must not be identified against vendor’s list price. Any model for identifying savings must be factored against prices available to public bodies.